expectancy in the u.s., real estate in hong kong, and the optics industry in germany? at t. rowe price, we understand the connections of a complex, global economy. it's just one reason over 75% of our mutual funds beat their 10-year lipper average. t. rowe price. invest with confidence. request a prospectus or summary prospectus with investment information, risks, fees and expenses to read and consider carefully before investing. >>> good morning. today's top story, a washington standoff continuing. fiscal cliff negotiations appear to be going nowhere. today president obama will meet with members of the business round table. plus, on the economic calendar, the november adp report on employment is due at 8:15 eastern. u.s. equity futures at this hour are indicated higher. not much happened yesterday. it's wednesday, december 5th, 2012, and "squawk box" begins right now.